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250gb External Hard Drive Best Buy [REPACK]

A portable hard drive or SSD is a do-it-all storage device, one that can carry huge libraries of files and share them amongst PCs, Macs, tablets and phones. It can also hold full system backup files that restore your computer's OS and software should you experience a crash. Getting the best external hard drive or best external SSD for your specific needs is an important shopping decision, balancing price, performance, features and even durability.

250gb external hard drive best buy

But with dozens of portable storage options available, how do you know which is the right external drive to buy? Should you opt for a speedier, more rugged (and more expensive) external SSD instead of a portable hard drive made up of comparatively fragile spinning platters and an actuator arm? Or could a slower, roomier and much cheaper portable hard drive be adequate for your storage needs?

To help you pick the right storage device for your needs, we test and review dozens of drives as they become available and publish our list of specific recommendations for the best portable SSDs and hard drives on this page.

If you're looking for a less expensive, more-DIY alternative you can also create your own external drive with one of the best SSD and hard drive enclosures. You could also go for one of the best Flash drives, which are all pocket-friendly but usually not as performant as SSDs.

The SanDisk Pro-G40 is an excellent all-around portable SSD. It has both Thunderbolt 3 and USB modes, so it will work on a wide range of devices, although you may need a Type-C to Type-A adapter or cable. All-around performance is good, write performance is exceptional, and your experience in general should be consistently fast. The drive is built on somewhat dated hardware, but this is a mature platform that works excellently for a portable solution. The metal and rubberized casing is another bonus as it keeps the drive cool while also protecting it against most environmental hazards.

For those looking to spend a little less on an portable hard drive, who also don't need 5TB of storage, should also consider Seagate's Backup Plus Ultra, which features a good software suite AES 256-bit encryption, and USB-A and USB-C support via an adapter.

That said, G-Technology's recent ArmorLock drive gives Samsung a run for its secure storage money, by using an app and key that's stored on your Android or iOS phone to unlock your drive. It may not be as convenient as swiping your finger across a sensor on your external SSD, but it might just be more secure.

Also note that, if you have a spare drive, you can easily make your own portable drive. Dozens of 2.5-inch drive enclosures can be found online for between $10-$25 (15-25) that will let you drop in an old drive easily, and turn it into an external hard drive or SSD.

And if you have an M.2 drive that you've swapped out of a gaming laptop, ultrabook or upgraded away from in your gaming PC, we've recently looked at NVMe enclosures from MyDigitalSSD and Pluggable. If you have a SATA-based M.2 drive that you'd like to turn into a portable drive, Silverstone's MS09 enclosure lets you do just that. And if you're keen on building your own speedy external SSD but don't have a drive handy to use, the recent WD Blue SN550 is a good candidate for that task. It's only available in capacities up to 1TB, but it's plenty speedy for external storage, and the more spacious model is already selling for as little as $115 at various online outlets.

Just make sure you get an enclosure that matches your drive, be that SATA or NVMe. And also keep in mind that DIY external drives usually aren't sealed, so they're not as likely to stand up to dust and dampness as well as external SSDs and portable hard drives that are designed to do so.

Whether you're shopping for one of the best external storage drives or one that didn't quite make our list, you may find savings by checking out the latest Crucial promo codes, Newegg promo codes, Amazon promo codes, Corsair coupon codes, Samsung promo codes or Micro Center coupons.

Are you a buyer with basic needs, looking to upgrade a traditional platter hard drive in a laptop or desktop with something faster? It's a safe strategy, these days, to check pricing on recent SSD models and pick the most affordable drive with the capacity you need, from a name-brand maker you are willing to trust with your data. Simple as that. Disappointment will be rare, assuming you are going from one Serial ATA (SATA) drive to another. (Also, see our primer SSD Versus HDD: What's the Difference?)

SSDs are no longer only traditional 2.5-inch drives, the same size and shape as the 2.5-inch hard drives found in many mainstream laptops. These drives are still common, but SSDs have been changing shape for some years now.

If you have a recent slim laptop or 2-in-1, it may use a gumstick-shaped M.2 drive (that is, if you can upgrade the drive in the laptop at all). For deep details about those drives and the best models we've tested, check out our more specific SSD buying guide, The Best M.2 Solid-State Drives, for a great deal of background and advice on this kind of SSD.

Still, that shouldn't be used an excuse not to back up your important data. SSDs are not spinning hard drives, but any SSD can still fail randomly due to a defect, a power surge, or some other unforeseen event. You may be able to get a drive replaced if it's under warranty, but the new drive that gets mailed to you won't have your old data on it, of course.

Our advice, if you're the type to tinker, is to purchase a drive that includes robust utility software, but read up on the included software first. To our eyes, Samsung provides among the best software packages with its drives, though Crucial/Micron, SanDisk/Western Digital, and ADATA/XPG are all good bets on the software front, too.

However, the best way to judge what you are paying, at a more precise level, is to divide the price by the number of gigabytes in the SSD. So, for example, a $50 240GB drive yields a cost per gigabyte of 20.8 cents. A $50 256GB drive, in contrast, comes in at 19.5 cents per gig. The least-expensive budget drives you'll see these days hover around 9 to 10 cents per gigabyte. Use this math to calculate your bottom-line price when comparing a host of drives.

Important to note: All of these drives are also available in capacities different than the ones we tested, so dig into each review for the details on alternate capacities, if you want a drive that's bigger or smaller than what you see below. For more storage picks, you can also check out our roundups of the best external SSDs and the best SSDs for upgrading your laptop, as well as the best external hard drives.

The major drawback from NAND comes from the fact that they tend to be expensive on a dollar per gigabyte basis, especially when compared to more traditional hard drives. The two most common ways to offset this problem are by either adding bits per cell or by moving away from 2D planar technology to 3D NAND technology and beyond.\"

It builds on the brilliant design and performance of its predecessor, the Samsung T3 SSD (also on this best portable SSD list), but brings it up to date with an incredibly fast USB Type-C connection that ekes out every last drop of performance from the solid state drive inside. It comes with a 10Gbps USB 3.1 Type-C Gen 2, making it capable of delivering twice the maximum theoretical transfer rate of its predecessors.

However, that pure dedication to speed comes at some expense. First, there's the financial expense, as this is a pricey external SSD. It's also larger and bulkier than the Samsung T3 or Samsung T5, which are also on this list. The device is fairly heavy at 150g, triple the weight of the Samsung T5, and at 116 x 60 x 18mm, it can best be described as portable rather than miniature.

This small and compact external hard drive offers very decent speeds, as well as a rugged body that keeps it safe from water - as well as drops and knocks. It's not the fastest drive out there - as it's still reliant on the aging SATA technology, rather than the newer - and faster - NVMe tech, but for the money you're still getting a brilliant performer.

The major drawback from NAND comes from the fact that they tend to be expensive on a dollar per gigabyte basis, especially when compared to more traditional hard drives. The two most common ways to offset this problem are by either adding bits per cell or by moving away from 2D planar technology to 3D NAND technology and beyond."

The best Xbox Series X hard drives can provide a massive quality-of-life boost to your console. Whether it's the officially licensed Seagate expansion card or an external drive, there are plenty of ways to enhance the Xbox Series X's storage. Of course, the products we've rounded up below will also work for the Series S, and might even come in handier on the "Game Pass machine" due to the limited storage of that console.

Unfortunately, there's no M.2 port in the Xbox Series X or S, which means you won't quite get the benefits of the best SSDs for gaming like PS5 owners do. Having said that, you do have a similar amount of storage space out of the box. Just like the PS5, the 1TB claimed on the packaging actually equates more to around 802GB once the OS and general bloat are factored in. As for the Series S, you're cutting that down by half. So, either way, either console can really benefit from one of the best external hard drives.

The fastest solution available to you is undoubtedly going to be the officially licensed Seagate Storage Expansion card. This allows for native performance that's on par with the Xbox Series X's very own internal SSD. It's the closest the Xbox Series gets to matching the best PS5 SSD expansions, and the best part is, you don't need to worry about overly-complicated DIY. Keep in mind that you cannot boot Xbox Series X games off of an external hard drive, whether it's an SSD or HDD, so we tend to view these options more as expanded storage for unused or last gen games. 041b061a72


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